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I am in the last leg of a kitchen remodel and need to purchase a garbage disposal. And I am wondering how much of a difference horse power makes in the day to day operation of the kitchen?

Has anyone here experienced the pros and cons to disposal units with different horse power?

NOTE: I almost posted this question on the DIY site, but I feel it has more relevance here. Moderators, feel free to move it if you think it belongs there instead.

UPDATE: We decided to go with the Waste King L-8000 Legend Series 1 Horsepower. It is really smooth and quiet. It takes up a fair amount of space under the sink however.

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I do think this is off-topic for the site, which is supposed to surround cooking; that said, I did provide an answer because I have some insight to share regardless. –  Ray Jul 18 '11 at 18:06
The answer depends... are you trying to put food down them, or your neighbor's yapping chihuahua? –  BobMcGee Jul 18 '11 at 18:30
@Ray, questions about Kitchen Equipment are specifically considered on-topic. Check the equipment tag for some detail. –  yossarian Jul 18 '11 at 18:54
Oops, my mistake –  Ray Jul 18 '11 at 19:03

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

I'd go for a more powerful one, in general, and I noticed that the higher powered disposals are sometimes quieter, which I really like. I really learned that paying the extra for good plumbing parts (faucet, disposal) through our plumber was worth it, since they can be fixed, unlike cheaper big box store stuff, and that there was a real difference in the higher quality disposal.

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My impression is that horsepower is really only going to matter when you've got something stuck in the teeth. Once or twice I've had this happen, where something has gotten stuck in there (say, a piece of broken glass, or an unpopped popcorn kernel). The machine grinders give up and the whole works just stop moving and I've had to turn it manually (using a wrench on the underside of the disposal) until it was crushed. More horsepower just means it will give up a little less easily.

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